Google Pixel Watch 2: A Comprehensive Hands-On Review

The Google Pixel Watch 2, the successor to the original Pixel Watch, has recently made its debut, boasting a plethora of new features and improvements. From enhanced health sensors to a more streamlined design, the Pixel Watch 2 aims to carve out its niche in the competitive smartwatch market.

Key Highlights:

  • Improved multipath heart rate sensor for more accurate readings.
  • Introduction of stress detection and safety check features.
  • Enhanced performance with a faster processor.
  • Lighter design for added comfort.
  • No change in display size, retaining the same bezel dimensions.

Design and Display:

The Pixel Watch 2 retains a design reminiscent of its predecessor but comes in a lighter package, weighing 31 grams, thanks to its 100% recycled aluminum housing. This makes it more comfortable, especially during sleep. The rotating side button has been refined for smoother navigation, and the domed glass is thinner, hopefully without compromising on durability. The watch is available in matte black, polished silver, and gold aluminum, each paired with its unique active band. However, the display brightness, rated at 1000 nits, lags behind competitors like the Apple Watch 9 and Galaxy Watch 6, which offer up to 2000 nits.

Health and Fitness Features:

Google has significantly ramped up the health and fitness features in the Pixel Watch 2. The new multipath heart rate sensor, equipped with more LEDs and photodiodes, promises up to 40% more accuracy. The watch also introduces a continuous electrodermal activity sensor, borrowed from the Fitbit Sense 2, which detects sweat levels to gauge stress. A skin temperature sensor further aids in identifying body responses. Users can then receive suggestions on managing stress, such as guided breathing exercises. The Pixel Watch 2 also offers automatic workout detection and reminders, heart zone training with haptic feedback, and pace training for runners.

Safety Features:

Building on the emergency SOS and fall detection features of the original Pixel Watch, the Pixel Watch 2 introduces a safety check feature. Users can set a timer, and once it expires, the watch prompts them to confirm their well-being.

Summary:

The Google Pixel Watch 2, priced starting at $349, brings a host of improvements over its predecessor. With a focus on health and fitness, the watch integrates advanced sensors and features to cater to the modern user’s needs. While it has made strides in performance and design, there are areas, like display brightness, where it could further improve. Overall, the Pixel Watch 2 is a promising contender in the smartwatch arena, offering a blend of functionality and style.